I took my dog to an open play session for all breeds and it was the best £6 I ever spent

Bear had the best time running around - photo shows a Rottweiler running around on some grass
Bear had the best time running around -Credit:Laycie Beck

One of the best ways to tire your dog out is by letting them play with other dogs, but for most people, it's not often as easy as this. For dogs to have a proper run-around and play they need to be off the lead, which you can't really do at most places unless you have a giant garden or rent a private paddock.

Or even if you have the space, it's often hard to find dogs similar to your own in terms of size and playfulness. I was planning on hiring a paddock to let my two-year-old rottweiler Bear have a run around in over the weekend, when I stumbled across The Dog Adventure Company, which I had not heard of before. They not only have multiple paddocks but also host socialisation sessions.

I've seen a few sessions like this before at various places, but usually they are for puppies, small breeds in general or specific breeds, such as Labradors or spaniels. I've never seen one that I would be able to take my dog to, however, as well as all the usual socialisation sessions the website also listed open play sessions.

There were around two dozen dogs happily running around and playing
There were around two dozen dogs happily running around and playing -Credit:Laycie Beck

These were for all dogs, regardless of age, size and breed, the only rule was that any dogs attending had to be friendly. I was over the moon as I had begun to lose hope that I would ever find something like this for my giant dog, and he absolutely loves other dogs, but often we meet them on walks where they can't play or the owners aren't too keen on Bear due to his size.

Ahead of booking the session, I messaged The Dog Adventure Company just to check that Rottweilers were ok, as often places say all types of dogs, but don't always mean it. I was thrilled to get a speedy response reassuring me that all dogs were welcome, and I couldn't wait to bring Bear to the session on Saturday, April 13.

It cost just £6 for an hour, and I can honestly say it was the best £6 I have ever spent. Within half an hour of leaving I had already booked Bear another session, and can definitely see this becoming a regular thing.

The site is located on Lincoln Road, just off the A46 and only a three-minute drive from Doddington Hall. It's around 20-30 dogs in a group, and whilst the open play session was taking place in a paddock, there was another session just for the small breeds taking place in another.

Bear was so excited when we got out of the car, and his head was going back and forth from left to right as I don't think he had ever seen so many dogs before. Once in the paddock we walked around the edge with the dogs still on the lead, which is so they have a chance to calm down and become desensitised to the field.

It was lovely to see dogs of all sizes and breed play together
It was lovely to see dogs of all sizes and breed play together -Credit:Laycie Beck

I was almost as excited as Bear to see all the dogs, and spotted some large ones like Dalmatians and German Shepherds, as well as some smaller ones like sausage dogs, there was even another Rottweiler there, who was still a puppy. After walking around the edge for around 10 minutes, the owner of the site, Steve, went into the middle of the field and reminded everyone of the rules, before counting down from three to let all the dogs off the lead.

After letting Bear off the lead, he ran into the centre of the field with all the other dogs, who immediately started running around, sniffing each other and acting like dogs typically do. All of the owners including myself continued to walk around the edge, which I believe was to discourage the dogs from becoming territorial to any area.

It was so heartwarming to see Bear play with other dogs, and there were a few big breeds that he immediately ran over to, but I also saw him playing with some of the smaller dogs. As we only rescued him several months ago we have been desperate to find ways to socialise him a bit more, and this session was absolutely perfect.

Unlike some paddocks I have been to before, it was also great to see that there was water for the dogs. There was a large raised bowl at one end of the field, and then some smaller bowls scattered about.

It seemed like most of the dogs and their owners were regulars, and were catching up and having coffees whilst the dogs ran around like crazy wearing themselves out. It was like a little community, and despite taking Bear on my own, everyone was really welcoming and chatty, it was just such a lovely atmosphere.

The socialisation sessions only cost £6 for an hour
The socialisation sessions only cost £6 for an hour -Credit:The Dog Adventure Company

I was impressed at how the owner was able to help keep an eye on what all the dogs were doing, whilst also making sure there was plenty of coffee and water going, and taking the time to speak to every single owner in both sessions. It was clear that he knew a lot about dogs, and gave me plenty of helpful tips on socialsation for Bear.

I couldn't believe the session only cost £6, and it was great for Bear to socialise but with all of that running around it also meant he was chilled out the rest of the afternoon and I was able to get various jobs done around the house without him deciding to follow me with toys.

There are loads of breed and age specific socialisation sessions listed on the site's website, as well as one to one training sessions and there is even early booking available for Santa Paws 2024. The site has carefully been created for everything, and with all the sessions there it must be Lincolnshire's best kept secret for dog owners.